Light scattering is a fundamental analytical technique for the characterization of particulate materials, and is most commonly applied to colloidal systems, nanoparticles and macromolecules in solution or dispersion, to determine particle size, molecular weight, or electrophoretic mobility. Different methods of light scattering analysis provide a range of useful information about your samples:
- Dynamic Light Scattering (DLS) measures the size and size distribution of molecules and particles
- Electrophoretic Light Scattering (ELS) measures the electrophoretic mobility of particles or molecules in dispersion or solution – this is often converted to a ‘zeta potential’
This data is often critical for establishing and optimizing sample integrity and stability, including the detection of aggregates or agglomerates. Routine use of light scattering analysis helps speed formulation development, gives greater insight into stability assessments, and helps elucidate and solve product and process challenges.
WHY USE LIGHT SCATTERING?
There are various types of light scattering, each designed to provide useful and actionable physicochemical information on the sample being analyzed.
The Zetasizer Pro and Zetasizer Ultra both offer two types of light scattering technology as standard: dynamic light scattering (DLS) and electrophoretic light scattering (ELS).
The frequency and intensity of the scattered light can be measured to determine the size and charge of materials. This information is commonly used to shorten development time for, and improve the stability of, colloidal (including protein) and emulsion formulations, and to assess the levels of aggregation in a system.